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Pat Ryan

Hatboro, Pa
  • 21
  • reviews
  • 2
  • helpful votes
  • 72
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  • House of Spies

  • A Novel
  • By: Daniel Silva
  • Narrated by: George Guidall
  • Length: 13 hrs and 1 min
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,148
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,900
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,878

Four months after the deadliest attack on the American homeland since 9/11, a terrorist plot leaves a trail of carnage through London’s glittering West End. The attack is a brilliant feat of planning and secrecy, but with one loose thread. The thread leads Gabriel Allon and his team to the south of France and to the gilded doorstep of one of the richest men in the country, Jean-Luc Martel, and his companion, Olivia Watson. A beautiful former British fashion model, Olivia pretends not to know the true source of Martel's enormous wealth.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • YES! This is what I want and expect!

  • By Dr. Meggin McIntosh on 08-27-17

Silva is the Best.

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-16-18

Daniel Silva is the absolute best writer of this genre. I have not read any of his books outside of the Gabriel Allon series - I am afraid they won't match up. He has made Allon a hero that nobody knows outside the intelligence services but he is a human. A good story with a lot of Middle Eastern/Europe flavor. The narration by Mr.Guidall was excellent.

  • The Storm Before the Storm

  • The Beginning of the End of the Roman Republic
  • By: Mike Duncan
  • Narrated by: Mike Duncan
  • Length: 10 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 2,765
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 2,567
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 2,552

The Roman Republic was one of the most remarkable achievements in the history of civilization. After its founding in 509 BCE, the Romans refused to allow a single leader to seize control of the state and grab absolute power. The Roman commitment to cooperative government and peaceful transfers of power was unmatched in the history of the ancient world. But by the year 133 BCE, the republican system was unable to cope with the vast empire Rome now ruled.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Interesting, albeit a bit dry

  • By Aria on 11-14-17

Another Forecast Gone Flat

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-16-18

Not a bad book, I was hoping for more however. It is a great thesis and I think one with much potential but it falls flat. It could be the narration, maybe the author should have had someone else read it. I will listen to it again at a later date to see where the problem was for me. I read /listen to SPQR and Rubicon and found them very good.

  • Seabiscuit

  • An American Legend
  • By: Laura Hillenbrand
  • Narrated by: George Newbern
  • Length: 13 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,854
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,603
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,608

Seabiscuit was one of the most electrifying and popular attractions in sports history and the single biggest newsmaker in the world in 1938, receiving more coverage than FDR, Hitler, or Mussolini. But his success was a surprise to the racing establishment, which had written off the crooked-legged racehorse with the sad tail.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • See you in the winner's circle

  • By Janice on 06-26-13

Seabiscuit: More Than A Horse

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-16-18

After watching the very good movie based on this book and reading Laura Hillenbrand's "Unbroken" I decided to listen to "Seabiscuit". While the movie was good - this book was incredible! She captured the time period from the early 1900's through to the mid to late 30's. She made what it was like to live in that time real. The background information on the life of a jockey was startling. I never knew the pain and self abuse they put themselves through just to ride in a race. But the story itself is a love story between the Howards (owners); Tom Smith (trainer) ; Red (Jockey) and of course The Biscuit. The five of them forged a partnership that was THE biggest attraction in the mid to late '30s. What really came through though was the amazing personality of Seabiscuit. Once they figured him out he carried them all to success - and it was not an easy road for any of them. George Newbern did a very good narration Laura Hillenbrand has become one of my favorite history writers.

  • Helmet for My Pillow

  • From Parris Island to the Pacific: A Young Marine's Stirring Account of Combat in World War II
  • By: Robert Leckie
  • Narrated by: James Badge Dale, Tom Hanks (introduction)
  • Length: 10 hrs and 24 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,801
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,557
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,557

The celebrated 2010 HBO miniseries The Pacific, winner of eight Emmy Awards, was based on two classic books about the War in the Pacific, Helmet for My Pillow and With The Old Breed. Audible Studios, in partnership with Playtone, the production company co-owned by Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman, and creator of the award-winning HBO series Band of Brothers, John Adams, and The Pacific, as well as the HBO movie Game Change, has created new recordings of these memoirs, narrated by the stars of the miniseries.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Engaging Account of the War in “The Pacific”

  • By Aaron on 08-13-14

War in the Raw

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-17-18

Excellent history of what it was like on a personal level for a Marine fighting in the Pacific. Nothing is candy coated and I came away with even more admiration for those men and what they endured. Robert Leckie had a interesting manner of writing history that is very easy to read and comprehend;he has a History of American Wars that is short (2 volumes) but concise. James Badge Dale was a natural for this as he did a fine job portraying Leckie in the HBO series "The Pacific" and he put in a very good performance.

  • Churchill and Orwell

  • The Fight for Freedom
  • By: Thomas E. Ricks
  • Narrated by: James Lurie
  • Length: 9 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 597
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 541
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 541

Both George Orwell and Winston Churchill came close to death in the mid-1930s - Orwell shot in the neck in a trench line in the Spanish Civil War and Churchill struck by a car in New York City. If they'd died then, history would scarcely remember them. At the time Churchill was a politician on the outs, his loyalty to his class and party suspect. Orwell was a mildly successful novelist, to put it generously. No one would have predicted that by the end of the 20th century, they would be considered two of the most important people in British history.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Elegantly Written

  • By Jean on 06-11-17

An Honest Assesment of the Facts.

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-17-18

The normal history buff would think that Churchill and Orwell were polar opposites. Thomas Ricks shows how wrong we are in that thinking. Being human both had their faults but they would learn from them and become better for it. Churchill detractors see him as an imperialist conservative who was for the status quo of the rich and Orwell was seen as a socialist who wanted nothing less than the destruction of Capitalism. Ricks weaves the story of these two giants of the 20th century and shows how similar their desires were and how their basic belief in the right of individuals to live their lives without the interference an overbearing intrusive government, and he does so without an axe to grind for either the left or right. I like how he shows Orwell's influence in today's world in places like Pakistan, China, and Southeast Asia. Even MLK's Letter from a Birmingham Jail written during the civil rights struggle is highlighted. A common thread with Winston and George was their complete distrust of the Soviet Union and Communism and for good reason it turns out. This was a very interesting and well written book and the narration by James Lurie was excellent.

  • The Fountainhead

  • By: Ayn Rand
  • Narrated by: Christopher Hurt
  • Length: 32 hrs and 2 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,502
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,717
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,747

One of the 20th century's most challenging novels of ideas, The Fountainhead champions the cause of individualism through the story of a gifted young architect who defies the tyranny of conventional public opinion. The struggle for personal integrity in a world that values conformity above creativity is powerfully illustrated through three characters: Howard Roarke, a genius; Gail Wynand, a newspaper mogul and self-made millionaire; and Dominique Francon, a devastating beauty.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • The Fountainhead

  • By Zachary on 06-04-10

Rands Best

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 07-20-18

The Fountainhead is a classic and is still relevant today. We should have more men like Rourke.

  • With the Old Breed

  • At Peleliu and Okinawa
  • By: E. B. Sledge
  • Narrated by: Marc Vietor, Joe Mazzello, Tom Hanks (introduction)
  • Length: 13 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 3,873
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 3,542
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 3,532

The celebrated 2010 HBO miniseries The Pacific, winner of eight Emmy Awards, was based on two classic books about the War in the Pacific, Helmet for My Pillow and With The Old Breed. Audible Studios, in partnership with Playtone, the production company co-owned by Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman, and creator of the award-winning HBO series Band of Brothers, John Adams, and The Pacific, as well as the HBO movie Game Change, has created new recordings of these memoirs, narrated by the stars of the miniseries.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • This is the second audio book of Sledge's work

  • By Richard on 10-21-13

Marine Corp at their best and worst.

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-10-18

The title simply states what the story is about - K.I.S.S. It shows a great respect that the author had for the professional Marines that were there for us. The best book on war from the perspective of an enlisted man that I have read and heard to date.

  • Such, Such Were the Joys and Other Essays

  • By: George Orwell
  • Narrated by: Frederick Davidson
  • Length: 12 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 121
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 102
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 95

Viewed as too libelous to print in England until 1968, the title essay in this collection reveals the abuse Orwell experienced as a child at an expensive and snobbish boarding school and offers insights into his lifelong concern for the oppressed. "Why I Write" describes Orwell's sense of political purpose, and the classic essay "Politics and the English Language" insists on clarity and precision in communication in order to avoid the Newspeak later described in 1984.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Superb collection of essays, very well read

  • By Christopher on 07-07-11

Te Joy of Reading Orwell

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-20-18

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes. Because the number of writers that are Orwell's equal can be counted on one hand.

What other book might you compare Such, Such Were the Joys and Other Essays to and why?

A Moveable Feast by Hemingway I guess.

Which character – as performed by Frederick Davidson – was your favorite?

n/a

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I try not to make thinking extreme. His essays are thought provoking.

Any additional comments?

Orwell's intellect, dry wit and his inner sadness all come through. One thing that is set in stone - he was not a sellout.

  • Follow Me Down

  • By: Shelby Foote
  • Narrated by: Tom Parker
  • Length: 8 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 28
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 15
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 16

A stark tale of a crime of passion, Follow Me Down tells the story of Luther Eustis, a respectably religious Mississippi farmer, who runs off to a deserted island with a young girl and brutally kills her after a three-week idyll. Why? And what was there about Eustis that attracted the young girl in the first place? The explanation of Eustis' motives is tangled and far from obvious, and each narrator perceives and reveals only parts and facets of the truth.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Good old Southern story

  • By Julie on 08-29-17

Worth The Trip

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-06-17

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes. An everyday story but told in a very novel way. No suspense but rather a study in character.

What did you like best about this story?

The way it is told through the eyes of the killer, the victim, the wife of the killer and the defense attorney.

What about Tom Parker’s performance did you like?

His easy going manner and his knowledge of when to pause a second for the listener.

If you could rename Follow Me Down, what would you call it?

What Did I Just Do?

Any additional comments?

This was my first Shelby Foote novel. I have read and listened to his Civil War histories and it is interesting to hear his work in a different genre.

  • Ernest Hemingway

  • A Biography
  • By: Mary V. Dearborn
  • Narrated by: Tanya Eby
  • Length: 29 hrs and 40 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 97
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 88
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 86

A revelatory look into the life and work of Ernest Hemingway, considered in his time to be the greatest living American novelist and short story writer, winner of the 1953 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1954. Mary Dearborn's new biography gives the richest and most nuanced portrait to date of this complex, enigmatically unique American artist.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A fine book undermined by performance

  • By Bill Stratford on 09-01-17

The last of a man's man.

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 08-06-17

Would you listen to Ernest Hemingway again? Why?
Yes. He interests me as a writer and a person and this book does present a fair amount of information.

What did you like best about this story?
Learning more about the man, the myth and the legend. Shows warts as well as praises.

What does Tanya Eby bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?
Emotion.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?
Laughed at the funny parts and felt sad as his depression started taking over his life.

Any additional comments?
I am not sure if Mary Dearborn is showing a feminine bias or a historical bias but there are several points in the book I felt that she did not understand the behavior of the American male in that time period when viewing him with her present day eyes. By today's standards Hemingway was a bully and a bore, but in the context of the age he lived in - he was not. His treatment of his wives came off one sided. She comes off as confused as Earnest may have been about his sexuality. His mother was in any age a whack job and would have confused anybody. But Mary Dearborn shows great understanding and empathy concerning the battle he had with depression. All in all she has written a good book on the greatest of American writers in the 20th. century.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful